Despite protest by opposition senators, the Senate yesterday approved N10.069bn for the Kogi State Government as refund for projects executed on behalf of the Federal Government.
Senators elected on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party had alleged that it was too much a coincidence to give the approval three days to the governorship election in the state.
President Muhammadu Buhari had last month transmitted a letter to the Senate requesting approval for the refund.
Senate Minority Leader Enyinnaya Abaribe, (PDP, Abia South), yesterday said the approval should be delayed by one week so that the money would not be misused during the election.
“The witch cries in the night and the child dies in the morning. The approval comes when election is on Saturday. The approval should be delayed until next week so that it would not be misused”, he said.
But Senator Barau Jibril (APC, Kano), commended the Kogi State Government for deploying the state resources to ameliorate the suffering of its people plying the dilapidated roads.
Senate President Ahmad Lawan justified the approval of the refund, saying other states that applied for same had got theirs.
“God’s time is the best. The Senate has seen the necessity. We have done justice to Kogi as we have done to other states”.
The chairman of the Senate Committee on Local and Foreign Debts, which worked on Buhari’s request for the refund, Senator Clifford Ordia, said the Kogi State Government had repaired seven roads and a bridge.
“Based on our findings, some of the highways were in state of disrepair before the intervention was carried out. The state government has paid all the contractors that constructed the roads.
“Our humble recommendation is that the Senate do approve the refund of N10 billion for projects executed on behalf of the Federal Government,” he said.